Hundreds of thousands of Norfolk people are being urged to join forces to drive down their energy bills.

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A new energy switch scheme – covering five districts in the county – was launched in Dereham, and it could see the amount paid for electricity and gas cut by up to £171 a year.

The joint initiative has been set up by Breckland, North Norfolk, Broadland, King’s Lynn and West Norfolk and South Norfolk councils.

They hope that by getting enough people signed up for the scheme, they can then go to an auction to bulk-buy energy and get people a cheaper deal through a company called ichoosr.

The more residents who sign up, the bigger the likely reductions.

The scheme will build on work which has already been done by Norwich City Council, which signed up almost 1,800 people for an auction in November last year.

It comes as Centrica, the owner of British Gas announced an 11pc rise in profits and on the back of warnings reported in the EDP that the broken state of the energy market means householders in the east will face further “inevitable” price hikes on their electricity and gas bills.

Breckland leader William Nunn said: “This is a great step forward and will show the people that when local authorities work together we can make a difference to their lives. This scheme could potentially benefit every single person that signs up.

“It’s not an easy time for anyone right now, but this collective energy deal may just ease things a little for those struggling to make ends meet.”

People can sign up from by visiting www.bigswitchandsave.co.uk and then clicking on their local authority.

People will need a recent energy bill and provide details of current suppliers and tariff plus some details about themselves.

Anyone can sign up, but there is no obligation to go ahead.

A series of roadshows are being held next week to explain more about the scheme – Breckland Business Centre, Dereham, Wednesday, 10am–3pm; Dereham Library, Thursday, 10am-3pm; CAB at the Assembly Rooms in Dereham, Friday, 10am-3pm; Breckland Older People’s Forum, Council Offices, Dereham, Tuesday, March 12, 9.30am-2.30pm; Thetford Customer Service Centre, Wednesday, March 13, 10am-3pm; Watton Library, Wednesday, March 20, 10am-3pm; Ecotech, Swaffham, Wednesday, March 27, 9.30am-1.30pm.

3 comments

  • if Councils, and Governments, rally wanted to help on energy bills they wouldn't turn a blind eye to many in rural areas who have no choice but to heat by domestic fuel. If you think electricity and gas bills have soared take a look at oil prices. But I, and many others have pointed this out to councils and so far the response is total silence. How about they gave up their Council tax contribution to their pension pot and help the rural areas? No, thought they wouldn't really care

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    weaversway

    Monday, March 4, 2013

  • Aha, is this similar to the scheme which Norwich City Council introduced months ago, you know, the one that the EDP couldn't wait to slate. I'm sure there won't be even a murmur if anything goes wrong this time, especially with an election soon in which many of these councillors, undoubtedly grateful for more friendly publicity from the EDP, are desperately hoping to retain their seats. Why is it the EDP is so keen to big-up certain councils and decry others? On a related matter, still no mention of the hilarious Eastleigh by-election result. How mean and petty. You know the one - nasty DaveCam's sneering cronies in the right wing media mounted an odious smear campaign which back-fired spectacularly. Next priority for the floundering Cameleon will be to buy-off or smear Beppe Faragio.

    Report this comment

    Mr Cameron Isaliar

    Saturday, March 2, 2013

  • if Councils, and Governments, rally wanted to help on energy bills they wouldn't turn a blind eye to many in rural areas who have no choice but to heat by domestic fuel. If you think electricity and gas bills have soared take a look at oil prices. But I, and many others have pointed this out to councils and so far the response is total silence. How about they gave up their Council tax contribution to their pension pot and help the rural areas? No, thought they wouldn't really care

    Report this comment

    weaversway

    Monday, March 4, 2013

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